I wrote this three years ago. It still rings true today.
Last week we heard the story of the insistent widow and were invited to pray unceasingly for justice for God’s chosen ones. The big questions in all that are who is God’s chosen ones and what does justice look like for them?This week we are confronted with the Pharisee and the tax collector. One is pretty sure he is one of God’s chosen ones. And he thanks God that he is not like those others out there that are clearly not one of God’s chosen ones. It is such an easy thing to think isn’t it, that we are God’s chosen ones. After all, we like the Pharisees, listen to God’s voice, we do our best to obey and live good and holy lives, even if we might not use that language. Every now and then we hear other Christians sounding awfully like this nasty Pharisee, whether it is in relation to gay and lesbian people, or criminals, or a number of other groups. And deep down we give thanks that we are not like them and that we are much more inclusive and broad minded and…. snap! There we are standing with that self-righteous old Pharisee. Only most of the time we are feeling too righteous to notice.Luke however offers some other groups of people as Gods Chosen Ones. In Luke 6: 20-21 he describes the poor, hungry and those who weep as blessed. In other words these are God’s chosen ones. And we are to pray unceasingly for them, for justice for them. If we do that then we will be changed. And maybe we will take ourselves out of the centre and start to walk away from the Pharisee, and maybe even find ourselves with the tax collector.